Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Addressing Climate Change

President Obama is set to speak today in a highly anticipated speech addressing climate change. The speech, scheduled for 1:35 PM (EST), is expected to outline an aggressive agenda for curtailing greenhouse gas emissions. In his speech, the President will announce specific goals and a time frame for achieving these, with a focus on three key areas: “preparing the country for the short- and long-term effects of climate change, cutting the amount of carbon pollution in the United Stats, and leading global efforts to combat climate change.

President Obama has called climate change “the global threat of our time,” and his strategy for mitigating our society's impact on the climate focuses on placing firm limits on carbon dioxide emissions from existing power plants and finalizing limits on new power plants, which are currently pending. If successful, these will have a major impact on our emissions, as 1/3 of all U.S. greenhouse gas emissions stem from electric power plants. 

In addition to these standards, Obama will introduce goals to increase the energy efficiency of appliances and buildings, as well as set higher standards for the fuel efficiency of heavy-duty trucks. These goals will be supplemented by $8 billion in loan guarantees for “innovative energy efficiency and fossil fuel projects, including efforts to capture and store carbon dioxide emissions” from fossil fuel power plants.

HI Chicago’s Commitment to the Environment

An E.P.A. Green Power Partner, HI Chicago derives 100% of its electricity from a renewable source: wind power.  By purchasing renewable energy, HI Chicago is not only reducing its impact on the environment, but is supporting growth in the renewable energy industry. The supply of renewable energy is only half the solution, however; we must also look at demand. 

Here at HI Chicago, we have replaced all of our incandescent light bulbs with CFLs and LEDs, which can be up to 85% more energy efficient! In addition to this, we have installed light motion detectors in many of our common areas, so lights are only on when necessary. These energy efficiency initiatives have had a great impact on reducing our energy consumption, but we could still use your help! Be sure to switch off your light when leaving the room and try taking the stairs next time you're about to board the elevator!


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